Apps still on the up in travel with more bookings than via mobile web

Despite the consensus that the mobile web would be the way forward, applications continue to hold their own, it seems.

Figures from App Annie reveal consumers spent 900 billion hours in apps in 2016 with the average user spending two hours per day using apps.

The company, which tracks app usage, also reveals that the amount of time spent in apps is increasing every year across every country.

Paul Barnes, northern Europe and Middle East director for App Annie, says that between 2014 and 2016 the majority of travel bookings made via mobile were via apps.

He was speaking at the EyeforTravel conference in London this week.

Barnes says the time spent in travel apps has also increased in the past two years, about 150% according to App Annie figures.

He adds that it is airlines that are leading the way in travel pointing to easyJet which says 20% of its bookings now come via the mobile app.

Barnes describes apps as the “ultimate travel tool.”

He would say that, working for App Annie, but the figures also speak for themselves.

Barnes also has advice for travel companies using apps to engage with customers:

“It’s really important to see this as a privilege in terms of having a presence on someone’s smartphone. Don’t do bad things such as send them too many messages. It’s also an opportunity to strengthen the relationship because of your presence in their pocket.”

Further tips include:

  • There is a rising expectation from consumers that apps will streamline the travel experience.
  • Apps create new opportunities to understand and reach customers.
  • Travellers use social media before, during and after travel so companies need to think about their presence in those networks.
  • There are some five million apps so the “build it and they will come” strategy won’t work.

Related reading:

The app revolution is not over but the easy money has gone

A reality check for airlines and the direct channel

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInEmail to someone

About the Writer :: Linda Fox

Linda is Managing Editor for tnooz. For the past decade, she has worked as a freelance journalist across a range of B2B titles including Travolution, ABTA Magazine, Travelmole and the Business Travel Magazine. In this time she has also undertaken corporate projects for a number of high profile travel technology, travel management, and research companies. Prior to her freelance career, she covered hotels and technology news for Travel Trade Gazette for seven years. Linda joined TTG from Caterer & Hotelkeeper where she worked on the features desk for more than five years.



Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Ahmed F Hosny

    I don’t see how using an App (that needs to be downloaded and installed) is a better solution than using an Online Travel Agency’s (or an Airlines’s) RESPONSIVE website.

  2. Alexander v. Bernstorff

    I believe that it is key for an airline (or any other TSP) to make sure it works for the end-user, whether via app or mobile site. Both technologies have pros and cons, and an airline may even chose to have both available so the consumer can chose up to his or her preferences.

    The reality, however, is that user experience in apps is often rediculous and even simple things cannot be done, or the app all of a sudden breaks off. Less (functionality) can be more (customer satisfaction). The need to integrate numerous (legacy) systems with various (legacy) interfaces makes it intricate to achieve a frugal and frictionless mobile workflow. Hence, the underlying system architecture is the thing to focus on – building a world-class mobile experience based on what most airlines have in terms of host architecture, might be a challenging undertaking. Airlines should look-out for modern offer- & order-management systems which will enable a smart mobile usability.

    Bear in mind: with generations Y, Z and those to follow, those providers will win who can offer a true post-mobile experience as customers, absent desktop infrastructure, will simply not be able to shop and book elsewhere than mobile!

  3. Sebastian Juarez

    “build it and they will come” strategy won’t work…no doubt about it, great article.

  4. Thomas Martensson

    Good article !!


Newsletter Subscription

Please subscribe now to Tnooz’s FREE daily newsletter.

This lively package of news and information from Tnooz’s web site provides a convenient digest of what’s happening in technology that drives the global travel, tourism and hospitality market.

  • Cancel